Winslow’s Carly Warn wins the 100 meter dash during the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference championship meet Friday in Oakland. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal Buy this Photo

Track and field athletes have put in the work all spring.

Now, with state championship meets set for Saturday, it’s time to let loose.

“With this time of year, you can only support (the athletes) you’re not going to tell them anything that’s going to make groundbreaking change in their approach,” Hall-Dale head coach Jarod Richmond said. “I feel like my job and our coaches job this week is just to keep the kids loose, comfortable, don’t make big changes to what they’re doing and just keep them in a positive space and to keep any momentum they have going. I think that we’ve done a really good job of that (this week). We’ve had really kind of casual practices. We’re getting work done, but at the end of the day, it’s at the point of ‘Do no harm (before the meet).'”

Hall-Dale is coming off a Mountain Valley Conference North championship last week in Farmingdale. The group was led by Ian Stebbins, who won the 100-meter dash, the long jump, the triple jump and the pole vault. Rishi Duvvuru also won the race walk.

“That’s the first team title of any kind in the history of the boys track program at Hall-Dale,” Richmond said. “So that’s a big check mark we finally got there. We’ve been second in that meet, it feels like every year.”

The Bulldogs will have some fresh competition at the Class C meet this weekend in Winslow, which moved down a class this season. The Black Raiders took home the girls title at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Small School championship in Oakland. In that meet, Carly Warn won four events (100, 200, long jump and triple jump), while teammate Olivia Tiner won the 400 and anchored the victorious 4×400 and 4×800 teams. Denali Norris boosted the Raiders with a victory in the javelin.

Cony’s Anna Reny wins the 300 meter hurdles during Capital City Classic meet Friday May 21, 2021 on the Taylor Harmon Track at Cony High School in Augusta. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal Buy this Photo

Coaches will still tinker with events and student-athlete placement for a state meet. For Winslow head coach Ken Nadeau, a change in class provides a challenge or two in preparation.

“The hardest part (in preparation for states) for me is moving down to C,” Nadeau said. “My normal preparation, I’m used to dealing with far less teams (in Class B). The biggest thing is, the private schools like Kents Hill has a couple of girls who are really, really good that, to be honest with you, I wasn’t looking for. I think there was another kid that showed up from Hyde, and they only competed against each other in their own little private school kind of meet.

“You’ve got to figure out, well which (event are opposing coaches) going to put a kid in and make a decision based on that,” Nadeau said. “And there’s always a couple of surprises. You just try to account for them. But at the end of the day, you are who you are on paper. No different than every other sport. You just hope your girls either place up or hit their marks or do slightly better.”

Cony is preparing for the Class B meet this weekend after winning the girls team title at the KVAC Large/Medium championships in Brunswick. Anna Reny won three events for the Rams (100 hurdles, 300 hurdles and the 200), while Grace Kirk won the 1,600, Kristen Kirk won the high jump and Julia Reny won the javelin.

“The team, I think, is very upbeat after last week, even our boys,” Cony head coach Shawn Totman said. “They’re just pretty excited about the (KVAC) results. We’ve been working really hard and I think this team has bought into the idea that success comes through how hard we work in practice. Any bit of success we had last week, it certainly comes out of that. I think that helps set the stage for this week. I think the kids know what’s going to be expected of them in our practices. We’re going to keep things pretty simple. We’re going to keep the kids very sharp. We’re going to listen to some music and keep things as upbeat as we possibly can. But also have a seriousness, a purpose of getting these kids as mentally focused and physically prepared as we can.”

Massabesic High School in Waterboro will host the Class A meet while Class B will be held at McMann Field in Bath. Brewer High will host the Class C meet.

 

Dave Dyer — 621-5640

[email protected]

Twitter: @Dave_Dyer

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